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Preparation for External Submission of ID-WSF components. ID-WSF Basics. The human-to-app story. Single sign-on, single logout, etc. take place among: The user (with actions mediated by a client of some kind) An identity provider ( IdP )

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the human to app story
The human-to-app story
  • Single sign-on, single logout, etc. take place among:
    • The user (with actions mediated by a client of some kind)
    • An identity provider (IdP)
    • A service provider (SP) that serves as a relying party (RP)
  • These actions are communicated primarily with XML over HTTP(S)
why app to app interaction
Why app-to-app interaction?
  • Get around browser payload limitations
  • Allow identity-enabled actions to happen silently (mediated by policy) when you're not around
    • All the way from pay my bills automatically...
    • let the emergency-room doctor access my medical records from another country if I'm in a coma
  • Allow multiple services to cooperate securely
    • Providing both personalization and access control
  • To achieve this, ID-WSF uses SOAP-based protocols
design goals
Design goals
  • A standards-based architecture for identity web services
    • Ecosystems of services that expose interfaces onbehalf of individual users' identities
  • A flexible foundation layer for application development
    • Across security domains and computing platforms
    • Across time, allowing for service location flexibility
  • The option of maximum privacy and security
    • Identity information requests access-controlled
    • Minimal disclosure of identity information
    • Protection against disclosure of identifiers
high level id wsf protocol architecture
High-level ID-WSF protocol architecture
  • Makes use of existing standards wherever appropriate
  • All infrastructure components and foundational services can be replaced by your own
    • At some cost to interoperability, naturally
  • Extensibility and modularity are built in to let you easily create your own identity-based services
major benefits of id wsf s design
Major benefits of ID-WSF's design
  • Authentication, authorization, and application of usage policy against consumers of identity data
  • User privacy through use of pseudonyms
  • Dynamic service discovery and addressing
  • Common web services transport mechanisms to apply identity-aware message security
  • Abstractions and optimizations to allow anything – including client devices – to host identity services
  • Unified data access/management model for developers
  • Flexibility to develop arbitrary new services
  • Support for social identity applications
kicking off an app to app interaction
Kicking off an app-to-app interaction
  • It usually starts with a user (possibly not you!) logging in and asking for some service behavior involving your identity
  • During SSO, the IdP informs the SP where to find yourDiscovery Service (DS)
    • A hub for locating, and possibly getting coarse-grained authorization to use, various identity services of yours
  • In a typical deployment, the IdP and DS form one tightly coupled software component
the locate and access dance
The locate-and-access dance

WSC...of identity data

  • The SP dons the role of a web service consumer (WSC)
    • A WSC is the requestor endpoint, and a web service provider (WSP) is the responder endpoint
    • Tip: Mentally add “of identity data” to remember which is which
  • The WSC asks the DS where a particular WSP is, and asks for access
    • WSPs will typically do fine-grained WSC authorization themselves
  • One example of a WSP is the ID-SIS Personal Profile (PP) service for name, address, etc.

WSP...of identity data

getting information sharing approval
Getting information-sharing approval
  • What if the PP service needs to check with you before responding?
  • It can ask your DS where to find an Interaction Service (IS) for youso it can bother you real-time
    • According to your own policypreferences for what's importantenough to bother you with
  • The PP is acting as a WSC
    • Doing the locate-and-accessdance itself, just likeBuyPuppyStuff did
  • The IS uses non-Liberty meansto (e.g.) SMS you for approval

Now it's a WSC

(...of identity data) in turn

  • These logical components were included for maximum privacy and flexibility, but not every deployment needs them all!
    • And the worst case is still optimized so that devices sensitive to “protocol chattiness” can handle it
  • Any identity service can “recursively” use the discovery and access system provided by the DS to call another one
  • At any point a service can (attempt to) contact the user for informed consent, policies, more attributes...
  • Throughout, the user might be known only by a pseudonym
real life example 2 radio@aol credits conor cahill and john kemp
Real-life example 2: Radio@AOL(credits: Conor Cahill and John Kemp)
  • The ultimate in user control: your personal device serves up your preferences

And oh, by the way –a WSP (...of identity data)

A Liberty-enabled

User Agent or Device


id wsf architecture piece parts
ID-WSF architecture piece-parts




Kantara standard

External standard

Third-party (possibly a standard)

discovery service
Discovery Service
  • Registry for services associated with an identity
  • Identity services are registered at the DS so that Identity requestors can subsequently discover them
  • Allows for multiple providers of the same service
  • Allows for data specific discovery
    • Retrieve the geolocation service that has a particular accuracy
    • Retrieve the profile service that has an age
security mechanisms
Security Mechanisms
  • Defines combinations of message & transport level security protections for WSF protocol messages
  • WSC & WSP can 'negotiate' which combinations to use for given transactions
soap binding
SOAP Binding
  • Binds abstract WSF protocol messages to SOAP header & payload
major features of id wsf
Additional features:

Service invocation and message construction

Security policy

Identity mapping mechanisms

Identity provider services

Major features of ID-WSF
  • Bootstrapping from SSO
  • Service discovery
  • User interaction
  • Smart clients
  • Web service identity model
  • Privacy mechanisms
  • Person-to-person federation
  • Design patterns for common development tasks
web service identity model
Web service identity model
  • A model for carrying the identity of various parties to a transaction within web service messages
    • Sender (human)
    • Recipient
    • Invoker (service on behalf of human)
    • Target identity owning the resource (human)
      • In querying for your own mail from an email service, you are the target identity
      • In looking up your colleague's calendar, your colleague is the target identity
  • WS-Security SOAP headers and SAML assertions are profiled to carry this info in “identity tokens”
privacy mechanisms
Privacy mechanisms
  • Ensuring that your data is shared on your terms by:
    • Capturing your usage directives and consent status in service messages
    • Allowing for interaction with you at critical junctures to obtain your consent and privacy policies
      • Interaction Service, Interaction Redirect
  • Inhibiting correlation of your activities by:
    • Offering different pseudonyms to different parties
      • Identity Mapping Service
  • Protecting your data in transit
    • WS-Security for confidentiality
design patterns for development
Design patterns for development
  • Many identity services at the ID-SIS layer need:
    • Provisioning, retrieval, and ongoing updates of identity data (“CRUD” – create, retrieve, update, delete)
    • Subscription and subsequent notification if something changes
  • Templates and guidelines are provided for rapid service development offering these common features
major open source implementations
Major open-source implementations
  • Sun's
    • SAML, ID-FF, ID-WSF in Java; SAML in PHP (“Lightbulb”)
  • Entrouvert's
    • SAML, ID-FF, ID-WSF in C with SWIG bindings for Python, Perl, Java, PHP
  • Symlabs'
    • SAML, ID-FF, ID-WSF (and WS-Fed) in C with Perl/PHP wrappers
  • Conor's
    • ID-WSF C client and Java server
  • Keep an eye on!
teg progress update
TEG Progress Update

ID-WSF Basics